The Minister for Communication Technology, Dr Omobola Johnson, on Friday disclosed that Nigeria has topped the list of 40 best Tech Start-up entrepreneurs for the DEMO Africa conference.

In a statement made available in Lagos, Johnson said that Nigeria topped the list with a total of 14 qualifiers for the DEMO programme, which would hold in September.

She said that after Nigeria were Kenya, with five start-ups, Ghana with four start-ups and Egypt with four starters.

“Rwanda, Tanzania, South Africa and Ethiopia will each have two representatives, while Tunisia, Benin, Cameroon, Uganda and Zimbabwe have earned a space each at the DEMO Africa platform.

Minister of Communication Technology, Omobola Johnson

Minister of Communication Technology, Omobola Johnson

“This presents another opportunity for African tech startups. Africa may have missed out on the industrial revolution, but we surely will not in the Information and Communications Technology (ICT) revolution.

“Through innovation, we will put Nigeria and Africa in general on the ICT map. Realising the huge potential of the software industry, we have put in place a set of initiatives that will assist the tech startups to create successful businesses, which will directly create jobs and wealth,” the Minister said.

DEMO Africa is the premier platform for the best and brightest companies throughout the continent seeking to launch their products in front of a global audience.

It is aimed at enhancing and deepening startup and innovation ecosystems of fast-growing African economies.

NAN reports that more than 400 applications were received but only 242 met the threshold for the adjudication.

Johnson said that out of 12 categories for application, communication attracted the highest number of applications with a total of 76 applications received.

She said that the communication category would have the highest number of representation, with 14 projects of the final 40 being in that category.

According to her, finance and banking will also have a good representation of eight out of 18 entries received.

Other categories that will have high representation on the DEMO Africa stage included retail, health and education.

Start-ups, however, shied away from Water & amp; Sanitation, and Waste Management & amp; Recycling.

No entries were recorded for these two categories, an indication that stakeholders still have to work on entrepreneurs’ confidence to encourage homemade solutions across all sectors.